I just finished reading an interesting article published by the BBC regarding the "British Flying Training Schools" located in the United States during WWII... and it really stirred my collecting juices to seek out more examples of wings, insignia and militaria related to these U.S. based and managed Contract Flight Schools.
Under President Roosevelt's directive, General Hap Arnold oversaw contractual agreements for the opening of the following seven BFTS programs:
#1 B.F.T.S. Terrell, Texas, (opened on June 9, 1941).
#2 B.F.T.S. Lancaster, Calif., (also opened on June 9, 1941).
#3 B.F.T.S. Miami, Oklahoma, (opened on June 16, 1941).
#4 B.F.T.S. Mesa, Arizona, (also opened on June 16, 1941).
#5 B.F.T.S. Clewiston, Florida, (opened on July 17, 1941).
#6 B.F.T.S. Ponca City, Oklahoma, (opened on August 23, 1941).
#7 B.F.T.S. Sweetwater, Texas, (opened in May, 1942, but closed just three months later and refocused on the WASP Program).
The training program was referred to as "Arnolds Scheme" and initially called for each Flying Cadet to pass a 28 week program which included:
"Primary" flying in Stearman PT-17's.
"Basic" flying in Vultee BT-13's.
"Advanced" flying in North American AT6A's.
Over the course of it's three year existence, the combined BFTS program in the United States was responsible for training approximately 18,000 RAF Pilots. That sure seems like a significant number of Pilots until you take into account we also trained nearly 200,000 USAAF/USN Pilots during the same period!
Edited by rustywings, 19 July 2016 - 03:51 PM.